UK in-store non-food retail sales increased by 1.3% in October 2022: BRC
UK online non-food sales fell 6.3% in October, compared to an 8.0% drop in October 2021. This figure is lower than the 3-month average drop of 4.8% and higher down 13.6% over 12 months.
In-store retail sales of non-food items in the UK increased by 1.3% on a total basis in the three months to October, and on a comparable basis, sales have increased by 0.4% since October 2021. Despite this, sales growth is well below the 12-month average growth of 32.5%, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC).
Additionally, the non-food online penetration rate fell to 39.9% in October 2022 from 42.0% at the same time last year, BRC said in its report.
In total, sales increased by 1.6% in October, compared to an increase of 1.3% in October 2021. This figure is below the 3-month average of 1.7% and the average growth over 12 months 2.7%.
UK retail sales rose 1.2% on a like-for-like basis from October 2021, when they fell 0.2%. This was in line with the 3-month average growth of 1.2% and above the 12-month average growth of 1.0%.
“As the cost of living for consumers continued to rise, retail sales slowed in October. With November’s Black Friday sales fast approaching, many people seem to be delaying spending, especially on larger purchases. Clothing and footwear, which saw stronger sales this year, declined as mild weather prevented customers from buying winter outfits. Meanwhile, electric blankets, air fryers and other energy-efficient appliances continued to fly off the shelves as people searched for future savings,” said Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium.
“Christmas will arrive later than last year for many and could be darker than bright as families focus on the end of the month, particularly as mortgage payments rise. Retailers are hoping the World Cup and Black Friday will give sales a much-needed boost ahead of Christmas.However, with little sign of easing cost pressures, government action is needed to support households.Retailers face a further inflationary rise in £800million government-imposed on their business rate bills next year to afford them,” Dickinson said.
“Although commodity prices are higher than in 2021, retail sales in October were up just over 1% in value year-over-year. This increase was due to inflationary pressures and does not paint a true picture of declining sales volumes as consumers buy fewer products per store,” said Paul Martin, Head of UK Retail, KPMG.
“Many may feel they have no choice but to cut prices to retain customers, but with their own inflationary pressures to contend with, one-off pre-Christmas promotions could further damage already tight margins. While Christmas is by no means canceled as consumers focus on a bright spot among the economic clouds, retailers face perhaps their toughest holiday season in a decade as buyers are looking to cut prices, seek bargains and buy less to meet the economic challenges ahead,” Martin concluded.
Fibre2Fashion (DP) Press Office